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Windows 7: Reinstalling Windows 7


19 Mar 2011   #1

Windows 7 Home Premium (x64) (build 7600)
 
 
Reinstalling Windows 7

I'd like to format my computer for many reasons but I have a question but before that I'd like to say that I got this computer through an event, here in my country, that costed me 150€ but it didn't come with the Windows 7 Home Premium installation/backup CD and I really want to format it. So, please let me know if I download a Windows 7 Home Premium copy and use the product key, below my computer, will it work?


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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19 Mar 2011   #2
Microsoft MVP

 
Getting a Perfect Reinstall of Factory OEM

Note: This is an early draft of what became Clean Reinstall - Factory OEM Windows 7 which is more current and complete.

A clean reinstall is often better than getting a new computer since most PC's come larded with sponsor's bloatware and useless factory utilities that have much better versions built into Windows 7. For this reason many tech enthusiasts clean reinstall using the Product Key on the COA sticker affixed to the machine.

Download the latest official Win7 installer ISO with SP1 for your licensed version, burn to DVD or write to flash stick using Windows 7 USB-DVD Download Tool.

Back up your files externally, make your Recovery Disks so you have a path back to factory condition, or save a Backup Image of the entire HD first. Run an audit of hardware and software including Product Keys using Belarc Advisor. Gather your program installers.

Boot the Windows 7 installer, choose Custom Install, then Drive Options (Advanced) to Delete all partitions not needed, repartition as desired following illustrated steps given here: Clean Install Windows 7. If you don't have a partition scheme in mind, just click Next after deleting to let the installer create and format your installation partition for you.

The installer is mostly driver-complete, with newer arriving quickly via optional Windows Updates. Just in case, have your Wireless or Ethernet LAN driver on flash stick or CD so you can install it to get online quickly. Then enable hardware driver auto-updating and check for optional Updates.

Any drivers still missing in Device Manager after several rounds of Updates can be found on the Support Downloads webpage for your model computer or device, along with possibly needed hotfixes which you can also wait to see if you need. Driver Install - Device Manager

Install updates and then programs slowly over time to gauge performance changes after each. Don't let any programs write themselves into msconfig>Startup as they slow startup, become freeloaders on your RAM/CPU and can spy on you. Uncheck everything except AV and gadgets in msconfig>Startup, then after reboots do the same in msconfig>Services after checking Hide All MS Services. Check back periodically to see if anything writes itself back in and turn it off in its Program Preferences or Uninstall it. Startup Programs - Change

Use a lightweight free AV like Microsoft Security Essentials which works perfectly with Windows 7 Firewall.

Activation at Control Panel>System may require a robocall to MS the first time to record your hardware signature in their servers.

When finished, clean and order the HD perfectly using state-of-the-art free CCleaner "Run Cleaner" button and Registry tab, then Puran boot-time defragger + Full Disk Check after checking Intelligent Optimizer on Additional Operations tab:

Finally save a Windows 7 Backup image externally so you never have to reinstall again, just reimage the HD or it's replacement using DVD/Repair CD with the stored image.

Special note to HP owners: HP Recovery will now do a Minimized OS Recovery when booting from F11, which retains only the OS, Recovery Manager, HP Support Ass't, and HP Wireless LAN. This is as close to a clean reinstall as you can get without using a retail DVD with COA key. If you clean reinstall only to C and leave all other partitions intact, F11 Recovery will still work later if you need it. You can Extract HP 3rd Party Software from RecovCD.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Mar 2011   #3
Microsoft MVP

W 7 64-bit Ultimate
 
 

Hello JRMC, welcome to Seven Forums!


Here's some interesting info you may find useful, and be sure to post back with any further questions you may have and to keep us informed.

After you have copied out or made back-ups of the data you need to save to external media; if you can find an exact Windows version that the PC shipped with you can do a clean install using the activation key on the COA sticker attached to the PC though it may require a robo-call to MS to sort the OEM batch-key.

How to Activate Windows 7 by Phone


If you can't find an exact same version, you could use the info in this tutorial to create an "all versions" installer of any version Windows installer, to install using the same method I posted above.

Windows 7 Universal Installation Disc - Create


After you have made backups of everything you care to save, the best method is to do a complete wipe (secure erase) of the entire Hard Disk Drive first, it over-writes everything, all the old Windows code including all the old drivers/programs, giving you the best possible space to install Windows to.

SSD / HDD : Optimize for Windows Reinstallation
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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19 Mar 2011   #4

Windows 7 Home Premium (x64) (build 7600)
 
 

Thanks, both of you. I don't really need all of that because I know half mostly, just on how to clean up my HDD and reinstall.
But one last question:

Do I copy the ei.cfg removal tool in to the Windows 7 installation CD/DVD?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Mar 2011   #5
Microsoft MVP

W 7 64-bit Ultimate
 
 

The ei.cfg removal tool can only be used on a Windows 7 ISO file, if you only have an installation disk you will have to extract the contents and remove/disable the ie.cfg file, I just added " .old " to mine and left it in place, and then burn the recreated ISO to a DVD.
click to enlarge
Reinstalling Windows 7-ei.jpg


My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Mar 2011   #6

Windows 7 Home Premium (x64) (build 7600)
 
 

Thanks once again.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Mar 2011   #7
Microsoft MVP

W 7 64-bit Ultimate
 
 

You're welcome, if you have need of further assistance, feel free to ask.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Jun 2011   #8

Win 7 Professional
 
 

Confused about the best method to reinstall Win 7 Professional after switching to an SSD as described in http://www.sevenforums.com/tutorials/149969-ssd-install-transfer-operating-system.html.

I have HP laptop - came with Windows 7 Home Premium that I have upgraded to Win 7 Professional -64. So, I have no disks at all, the sticker on the machine has the code/license for Home edition and I have a Windows Activate Anytime upgrade key for Home to Professional. I would like to do a clean install of Professional. But, do I first have to install the original Home version and then go through the upgrade using my key?

Also, do I need to make an Install disk as described in How to create a Windows Vista / 7 installation disc (bootable) using ImgBurn - ImgBurn Support Forum It seems to me that will likely be for Professional and I do not think I have a license number for that - just the upgrade key.

Basically looking for any help about step-by-step help for getting Professional up and running on my new SSD given the complications of upgrading,no install disk, etc.

Thanks a lot for your help and assistance.

LPB

My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Jun 2011   #9
Microsoft MVP

 

If you're happy with your current Windows 7 installation then you can clone or image it over to the new SSD.

If you have a WD or Seagate HD in the mix, you can use their free premium Acronis True Image cloning or imaging program to either clone or save a backup image externally to reimage to the SSD. Seagate Acronis cloning free util
WD Acronis free cloning app

Or you can use Windows 7 native imaging:
Backup Complete Computer - Create an Image Backup
System Image Recovery

To reinstall you'll need to use your HP Recovery Disks (which you should make now if you haven't) then run the Anytime Upgrade again. Or you can find a Windows 7 installater to do a clean reinstall of just the OS unhindered by the factory bloatware which is worst of all on HP's. Here are steps for getting a perfect factory OEM reinstall: Reinstalling Windows 7

There are some reports that clean reinstalling with a Professional installer will accept the Anytime Upgrade key but I have not confirmed this. You can try, however.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Jun 2011   #10

Win 7 Professional
 
 

gregrocker:

Thanks a lot for this very useful guide. Looking forward to following your suggestions and having my SSD installed and up and running soon.

LPB
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Reinstalling Windows 7




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